Title:
Apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a child's car seat
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
An apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat. The apparatus includes an elongated member formed from a predetermined material and having each of a predetermined length and a predetermined cross-sectional shape. A hook like member is disposed at a first end of such elongated member for hooking into an aperture formed through a male connecting member of such car seat belt to enable pulling such seat belt through an at least one opening formed through a back portion of such car seat.



Inventors:
Crawley, James D. (Pittsburgh, PA, US)
Nolf, Michael H. (Homestead, PA, US)
Application Number:
11/506039
Publication Date:
02/21/2008
Filing Date:
08/17/2006
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47C1/08
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
20030006639Legrest-carrying chairJanuary, 2003Shimizu
20040100134Seating arrangementMay, 2004Plant et al.
20100052384CHILD SAFETY SEAT WITH A TRANSVERSE ENGAGING BASEMarch, 2010Yang
20040095002Slip cover for sofas with cushion retention meansMay, 2004Cohen
20030137167Enhanced celebratory chairJuly, 2003Napell
20090315386FASTENING BELT SYSTEM FOR PARTICULAR USE IN CHILD AUTOMOBILE TRANSPORT SOLUTIONSDecember, 2009Stasiak et al.
20020030147Method for manufacturing a profile partMarch, 2002Stoelinga
20090100587Moveable swimming pool seatApril, 2009Smith
20050017566Child's outerwear garmentJanuary, 2005Rizk
20100019548WORKSTATION WITH VARIABLE SPATIAL CONFIGURATION CAPABILITIESJanuary, 2010Tajbakhsh
20100033001SINGLE RETRACTOR LOWER ANCHOR CONNECTION SYSTEMFebruary, 2010Boyer



Primary Examiner:
MCPARTLIN, SARAH BURNHAM
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
JAMES RAY & ASSOCIATES (2640 PITCAIRN ROAD, MONROEVILLE, PA, 15146, US)
Claims:
We claim:

1. An apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat, said apparatus comprising: (a) an elongated member formed from a predetermined material and having each of a predetermined length and a predetermined cross-sectional shape; and (b) a hook like member disposed at a first end of said elongated member for hooking into an aperture formed through a male connecting member of such car seat belt to enable pulling such seat belt through an at least one opening formed through a back portion of such car seat.

2. An apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat, according to claim 1, wherein said apparatus further includes a means disposed at a second end of said elongated member for preventing said apparatus from slipping out of a hand of a person pulling such seat belt through such at least one opening.

3. An apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat, according to claim 2, wherein said means is a second hook like member formed on said second end.

4. An apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat, according to claim 2, wherein said means is a pistol grip like member.

5. An apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat, according to claim 2, wherein said means is an upset portion.

6. An apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat, according to claim 2, wherein said means is a bicycle grip like member.

7. An apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat, according to claim 2, wherein said means is a roughened surface.

8. An apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat, according to claim 1, wherein said elongated member is one of rigid, telescoping and flexible.

9. An apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat, according to claim 1, wherein said predetermined material is selected from plastic and a predetermined metal.

10. An apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat, according to claim 9, wherein said predetermined metal is selected from aluminum and steel.

11. An apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat, according to claim 1, wherein said predetermined cross-sectional shape is selected from round, square, hexagonal, octagonal and oval.

12. An apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat, according to claim 11, wherein said predetermined cross-sectional shape is round.

13. An apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat, according to claim 8, wherein said elongated member is rigid.

14. An apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat, according to claim 1, wherein said predetermined length of said elongated member is at least sufficient to span a width of such car seat and provide room to hook such male connecting member of such seat belt and for gripping said second end of said elongated member.

15. In combination with a car seat belt and one of a baby and a toddler car seat; the improvement comprising an apparatus for use in connecting said car seat belt to said one of said baby and said toddler car seat, said apparatus having an elongated member formed from a predetermined material and having each of a predetermined length and a predetermined cross-sectional shape and a hook like member disposed at a first end of said elongated member for hooking into an aperture formed through a male connecting member of said car seat belt to enable pulling said seat belt through an at least one opening formed through a back portion of said baby and said toddler car seat.

16. The combination, according to claim 15, wherein said further includes a means disposed at a second end of said elongated member for preventing said apparatus from slipping out of a hand of a person pulling such seat belt through such at least one opening.

Description:

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates, in general, to car seats used by infants and toddlers and, more particularly, the invention relates to an apparatus for use in connecting the seat belt in a motor vehicle to the child's car seat.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Prior to the conception and development of the present invention, as is well known in the art, seat beats in a car have been used to secure either a baby's or toddler's car seat to the seat. In order to accomplish this task it requires fishing the car's seat belt through relatively narrow slots provided in the back of the child's car seat. In most cases an adult's hand is to large to fit into these slots which makes the task all the more difficult to perform.

Applicants are aware of U.S. Pat. No. 7,044,548 issued to Mullen et al. This patent attempts to solve this problem by providing a permanently attached latch system incorporated therein. The latch system has a securing belt, latches disposed at each end of the securing belt and a connection member. The latches are adapted to connect to anchor points rigidly connected to the vehicle. The connection member has a loop portion through which a securing belt is slideably disposed and a connection portion adapted for permanent connection to the child vehicle seat. Obviously, this child car seat is more expensive and does not entirely solve the problem of securing the child's car seat to the vehicle car seat.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

According to a first embodiment, the present invention provides an apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat. The apparatus having an elongated member formed from a predetermined material. The elongated member including each of a predetermined length and a predetermined cross-sectional shape. There is a hook like member disposed at a first end of such elongated member for hooking into an aperture formed through a male connecting member of such car seat belt to enable pulling such seat belt through an at least one opening formed through a back portion of such car seat.

In a second embodiment, the present invention provides in combination with a car seat belt and one of a baby and a toddler car seat the improvement of an apparatus for use in connecting such car's seat belt to such one of a baby and a toddler's car seat.

OBJECTS OF THE INVENTION

It is, therefore, one of the primary objects of the present invention to provide an apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat which will significantly reduce the difficulty of threading the seat belt through the opening in the back of the car seat.

Another object of the present invention is to provide an apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat which is relatively simple to use.

Still another object of the present invention is to provide an apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat which is relatively light weight.

Yet another object of the present invention is to provide an apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat which is relatively inexpensive to produce.

A further object of the present invention is to provide an apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat which can be collapsed into a relatively small length suitable to be carried in a woman's purse.

It is another object of the present invention to provide an apparatus for use in connecting a car seat belt to a car seat which does not require any assembly.

In addition to the several objects and advantages of the present invention which have been described with some degree of specificity above it should be noted that various other objects and advantages of the invention will become more readily apparent to those persons who are skilled in the relevant art from the following more detailed description of the invention, particularly, when such description is taken in conjunction with the attached drawing figures and with the appended claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE SEVERAL VIEWS ILLUSTRATED IN THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a plan view of a presently preferred embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 2 is a plan view of an alternative embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 3 is a plan view of another alternative embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 4 is plan view of still another alternative embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 5 is plan view of yet another alternative embodiment of the invention;

FIG. 6 is plan view of still yet another alternative embodiment of the invention; and

FIG. 7 is a cross-sectional view taken along the lines vii-vii of FIG. 1 showing a number of alternative cross-sections for the elongated member.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF A PRESENTLY PREFERRED AND VARIOUS ALTERNATIVE EMBODIMENTS OF THE INVENTION

Prior to proceeding to the more detailed description of the present invention it should be noted that, for the sake of clarity and understanding, identical components which have identical functions have been identified with identical reference numerals through the several views illustrated in the drawing figures.

Now refer more particularly to FIG. 1 wherein there is illustrated a presently preferred embodiment of an apparatus, generally designated 10, for use in connecting a car seat belt (not shown) to a child's car seat (not shown). Apparatus 10 includes an elongated member 12 formed from a predetermined material and having each of a predetermined length and a predetermined cross-sectional shape.

There is a hook like member 14 disposed at a first end 16 of such elongated member 12 for hooking into an aperture (not shown) formed through a male connecting member (not shown) of such car seat belt to enable pulling such seat belt through an at least one opening (not shown) formed through a back portion (not shown) of such child car seat. Such hook like member 14 may be formed integrally with or attached to the first end 16 of the elongated member 12.

The car seat belt, child's car seat, the aperture in the male connecting member, the male connecting member, the opening in the back of the child's car seat as well as the back portion of such child's car seat are well known in the art and further description thereof is not believed necessary for understanding the advantages the instant invention provides.

In the presently preferred embodiment of the present invention, such apparatus 10 will further include a means, generally designated 20, disposed at a second end of such elongated member 12 for preventing the apparatus 10 from slipping out of a hand of a person while pulling such seat belt through the at least one opening in the back of the child's car seat. Like the hook like member 14 such means 20 may be formed integrally with or attached to the second end 22 of the elongated member 12. As best seen in FIG. 1 one form of such means 20 is a second hook like member 18 formed on the second end 22 of such elongated member 12.

Now refer, more particularly, to FIGS. 2 and 3. Illustrated therein are a number of alternative embodiments of the means 20 for preventing the apparatus 10 from slipping out of the hand of a person pulling such seat belt through such at least one opening in the back portion of the child's car seat.

For example, in one alternative embodiment such means 20 can be in the form of a pistol grip like member 24. In another alternative embodiment the means 20 can be an upset portion 26. In yet another alternative embodiment such means 20 is a bicycle grip like member 32 (see FIG. 2). In still another alternative embodiment such means 20 is a roughened surface 28 (see FIG. 4).

In apparatus 10 the elongated member 12 may be any one of rigid, telescoping (see FIG. 3) and flexible (see FIG. 6). Additionally, the predetermined material for such apparatus 10 can be selected from plastic and a predetermined metal. Such predetermined metal is selected from aluminum and steel. If the apparatus 10 is metal aluminum would be preferred due to weight consideration. Further, such predetermined cross-sectional shape can be selected from any one of round, square, triangular, hexagonal, octagonal and oval (see FIG. 7). In the presently preferred embodiment the predetermined cross-sectional shape will be round. It is presently preferred that the elongated member 12 will be rigid.

It should be noted that, in the presently preferred embodiment of the invention such predetermined length of the elongated member 12 will be at least sufficient to span a width of such child's car seat and provide room to hook such male connecting member of such seat belt and for gripping the second end 22 of the elongated member 12.

The present invention further envisions the combination of a car seat belt and one of a baby and a toddler car seat using the improved apparatus 10 for use in connecting the car seat belt to one of the baby and toddler car seat.

While in accordance with the patent statutes both a presently preferred and a number of alternative embodiments have been described in considerable detail above it should be obvious that persons skilled in the art may envision various other adaptations and modifications to the apparatus without departing from either the spirit of the invention or the scope of the appended claims.